Life Changes, Self Care

Self-care

 

Things have changed. I’m working, failing at being primarily plant-based and other stuff. Most noteworthy has been my mental health. I debated mentioning this but decided it could help my son when he’s older. I hope he realizes there is nothing to be ashamed of, embarrassed about or fearful of because it can happen to anyone. Before I start, I’m not taking anything as I don’t think it is that bad however if you do need help do not hesitate to seek a professional. In my case, I sought comfort from my family.

It started when I was having a hard day. I wasn’t sleeping, everything went from great to horrible over the smallest things and I didn’t seem to enjoy anything. By all accounts, I thought my depression was coming back. I feared not being able to handle everything with a smile on my face. Embarrassed that I lacked endurance because all of this took place in only a few months. And I was ashamed of not being able to balance everything perfectly. Holding everything in was turning me into an emotional monster.

One day I decided to blurt it all out no matter how crazy I thought it made me look. I was nervous as I’d built up a terribly dramatic scene in my head. Thankfully all went well. My husband comforted me and reminded me that taking time for myself is important. Actually following through with what we discussed was extremely hard since I’m not good at relaxing…

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Step 1 – Logging off

I stopped checking social media which included watching vlogs. I started comparing my life to the ones I saw which isn’t fair because most only put up the good stuff and even “regular” moments seemed to look shiny compared to my own.

 

Step 2 – Getting the basics done

I knew there was no way I could relax if I didn’t clean my house to my satisfaction and check off certain things on my to do list for work. I’m the type of person who has to have clean, organized space or my mind feels cluttered. I stopped fighting and used my first (and second) day alone to do just that!

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Step 3 Relaxing

I never thought I’d be able to do this! Technically I’m writing this post, working, making grocery list, light cleaning (I truly enjoy cleaning) and planning my return to healthy lifestyle changes. But I am truly relaxed (for me…). Like previously stated, I enjoy getting things done and though I should’ve continued to do nothing it just isn’t in my nature.

Was my time alone perfect? No. Was I relaxing the whole time? Nope. Did I enjoy myself? Absolutely! I may have times when my emotions go haywire and I don’t enjoy anything but now I have steps to get me back into the right head space. I also have people I can talk to that will help me come back down off of the emotionally dangerous ledge. So here are my keys to success*:

  • identify the problem(s)
  • talk to someone including a professional if necessary
  • make a plan
  • follow through

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*this is not medical/ professional advice; this is what works for me ๐Ÿ™‚
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Food, Health/ Fitness, In the beginning, Life Changes

Update -Primarily Plant-based

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Made this after grocery shopping!

The first week of my Pescatarian/ Vegetarian lifestyle was easy. It was fresh in my mind and I was filled with blind determination. I knew what I wanted to do and I made sure to stay close to home so I wouldn’t be tempted to revert to my old eating habits. I felt great. My mind and intestines felt clear. I’m not sure if this was in my head or real but I loved the feeling. I wanted to keep it going but I still hadn’t bought groceries so I kind of fell off on the weekend. Not horribly but still not what I planned.

Week two was just plain sad… It was so sad I didn’t even track how many good days I had. As far as how I felt, I didn’t have the same clear, excited feeling. I was slightly stressed, distracted and questioning every decision I’ve ever made as an adult. Some of those things were huge and caused a lot of unnecessary anguish. I won’t say my new lifestyle was the cause because I don’t know. What I took from the first two weeks:

  • Don’t be a junk food pescatarian/ vegetarian
  • Be prepared
  • Don’t beat yourself up if you’re not perfect
    • esp if you’re not a vegetable lover…
  • Have a backup plan when you’re on the go
  • Don’t skip meals unless you are planning to fast
    • this is not medical advice
  • Keep a food journal or at least jot down food you weren’t planning on eating
    • Ex: in my case it would be any meat other than fish

The picture at the top was the first meal I planned after going grocery shopping. It was a big deal because I wasn’t a fan of cucumbers. However I am challenging myself to try vegetables I don’t like. Sure I don’t love them but I’m glad I went for it because now I find them tolerable. The takeaway is give yourself leeway without completely forgetting your original goal(s).

Food, Health/ Fitness, In the beginning, Life Changes, Self Care, Weight

Lifestyle Change – Pescatarian/ Vegetarian

 

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I’ve been considering being a pescatarian or vegetarian for a while but never fully committed. Now I feel inspired to give it a try. I’m not going to commit to a specific duration because I’m hoping this will be a permanent change. I know myself and the people I’m surrounded by so there will be challenges but in the end everyone will be supportive (or tolerant).

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I plan to read the Meatless Machine chapter in the book 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferris. He was spot on helping me lose weight (though I’ve fallen off the wagon and burned it…) so I trust this source to get me started with all around health and nutrition for my seafood only journey. I still plan to transition to full vegetarian but I feel pescatarian is a more realistic goal for now. I’m not a huge fan of vegetables. So the first thing I need to do is research recipes in order to make my meals edible. Once I get that down I’ll start trying new things. Any advice or helpful tips would be more than welcome.

Thanks in advance!

Parent Life, Travel

Travel Dreams

*No Frills Post*

I’ve always been fascinated by people adventurous enough to live abroad. I wanted to move when I was fresh out of high school but I didn’t. I wanted to move when I got married but again I didn’t. I’m a mom and still have those desires but this time I wouldn’t want it to be permanent because I want my son to be able to grow up around his family (unless an opportunity was too good to pass up!).

My questions for anyone reading this: How did you do it? Did you plan for years? Did you just go for it? How did/ do you feel? What did your family/ friends think? Does anyone visit you? Do you go back home? What has your experience been? Any advice for a mom that wants to see the world?

I have a desire to show my son the world so he can experience life outside of the United States of America. I want him to be brave enough to be an explorer and know that mommy and daddy have his back. I want him to visit different places and know he can live any where he chooses especially if he has space for his parents (LOL)! Most of all I want him to widen his view of the world and know the world is big and small at the same time because while the space is huge the human experience happens everywhere and everyone has a story to tell.

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In the beginning, Life Changes

YouTube: Journey to Mommy

I’m on YouTube! Below is a link to my newest unboxing video.

I decided to start posting on YouTube a few months ago because it is easier to show products in a video. I have a few review and unboxing videos but going forward I will have more. I plan on having 3 playlists for now: health and fitness, unboxing and reviews as well as my YouTube adventure.

Health and Fitness will at times replace the blog because I’ve been failing to update it since I haven’t made any real progress. I feel YouTube will give me the opportunity to quickly own up to my healthy lifestyle struggle rather than having a repetitive apology blog. Reviews and Unboxing are fun things I like to do because sometimes (esp when buying online) you need to see how an item looks while in motion. And you want to see someone you know trying it out. My YouTube adventure will be an amusing look at the process I’m going through to start my channel and work through anything that comes up.

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I hope you’ll join me on YouTube as Journey to Mommy starts creating videos ๐Ÿ™‚ And thank you for reading and subscribing to my blog. It means a lot when I see people not only found my tiny corner of the internet but also liked what they saw and chose to stick around โค

 

Health/ Fitness, Life Changes, Postpartum, Self Care, Weight

Motivation & Habits

Do you remember her from my Motivation & Habits post? If not feel free to check it out!

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NOTE: I asked the woman above for permission to post this screenshot.

Well I did exactly what I intended to do but with a twist. After checking out http://www.ryschyragz.com I decided to purchase motivation items. These are items I intentionally bought in a smaller size to inspire and remind myself to stick to my healthy lifestyle. This is also a form of financial motivation for me as I do not like to waste money.

I bought 2 shirts and pants.

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I’m an XL or XXL depending on the shirt and pants size 16/18. The shirts are both medium which I didn’t plan but they were too cute to pass up. I originally bought a different pair of pants but they were out of stock. She explained what happened, apologized for it and sent me the pants below in 2 different sizes (L & XL). Not only was I pleasantly surprised by the customer service but she included a nice note saying thank you and acknowledging what happened. Now I don’t know about you but good customer service is getting harder and harder to find so when I get it I become a regular customer.

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The surprises kept coming as I tried the clothes on. I tried it on to see how much I needed to lose before any of it fit. I mean they don’t fit correctly but at least I got them on! I’m wearing the XL pants in both pictures as I was under no delusion that the Large was going to go up far enough for me to take an appropriate picture.

The shirts are both soft to the touch and feel good on. The pants have great stretch so even if they don’t look like the correct size* trust me and try them on. I’ll have an update as I lose weight and can fit them correctly. But for now I will definitely be a returning customer so I can get something that fits now ๐Ÿ™‚

*For my exact measurements please see my April 2018 Weigh In post.

In the beginning, Life Changes, Reviews, Self Care

Putting It Out There – Career/ Business

I’ve often wondered how reviewer/ product testers get in contact with their favorite brands in order to get sponsored. I’ve looked into a few things on my own but not many end up being real. I am here to ask for advice from people capable of pointing me in the right direction. I know all information comes with BUTs because no one can guarantee a company will have any use for what I can provide; detailed reviews and suggestions for improvements but any useful advice would be very much appreciated.

Drum Roll please:

Target Corporation – This has been a favorite of mine for years and I frequently refer to it as my happy place. 2 of the 3 other companies mentioned were discovered at Target. The Starbucks inside are an added bonus.

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Just started using big pack of wipes; I normally use the paper masks

Yes To, Inc. – Specifically Tomatoes. I love their sheet masks but I can’t use them as often as I like so I am not positive they work so much as I enjoy using them during my Spa Day.

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Out of wipes so this is just an empty package ๐Ÿ™‚

SheaMoisture – Favorite products African Black Soap: Clarifying Mud Mask, Body Wash & Clarifying Facial Wipes; Raw Shea Chamomile & Argan Oil Baby Head-to-Toe and last but not least Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Leave-In Conditioner. They also have makeup I would love to try.

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Need to restock my oils because this is all I have left

NOW Foods – ALL THE OILS!!! I’m kidding I haven’t tried them all (though I’m working on it) but I am obsessed with a lot of them. I’ll name my top 3 there are a lot: Sweet Almond, Jojoba and Grapeseed/ Avocado (these I use interchangeably).

There you have it. It is now in the universe and even though I will not give up in pursuing these brands I’m hoping someone with the knowledge I need finds my space and points me in the right direction. Also this is not me saying I wouldn’t be open to other brands especially ones with natural ingredients, fair trade practices or local businesses. I’m simply saying this is a list of companies I currently use/ go to.

PS – I’m counting this as a digital Vision Board because lets face it it would be a dream come true to have my favorite brands find my corner of the internet.

Health/ Fitness, Life Changes, Postpartum, Self Care, Weight

Motivation & Habits

If you’ve been reading my blogs you know I’ve struggled with motivation. I get inspired, do okay, get distracted, fall off, repeat. My wake up call came in the form of family pictures; see below.

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Yup, all the hard work I was doing went completely sideways when I got sick. Instead of preparing something healthy and easy, I turned to junk food. Not only did we spend a lot of money but I’m pretty sure we shaved at least 2 weeks off of our lives. The final guilt was seeing how the family pictures turned out. I looked and felt bloated, my face was still healing from the infection and the antibiotics made my normally oily skin very dry to the point of peeling so I piled on makeup that didn’t turn out right. I spent the next morning sad and depressed. Then my support system kicked in.

My husband gave me an amazing pep talk and because he’s awesome and super supportive we went to Target at 10pm so I could buy containers to help me meal prep. We ate one more garbage meal then I got to work. I meal prep’d that night. Monday I turned to the internet to keep me motivated since hubby would be at work and I had an appointment near one of my favorite restaurants.

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After an emotional appointment (nothing bad just needed to plan better). I didn’t eat perfectly but I didn’t go to the restaurant either. Tuesday was tricky because I was running errands which meant I had to have breakfast, lunch and snacks with me. Thankfully my mom was able to come and helped with my son. Afterwards we were both very hungry but instead of going to fast food we went to the grocery store. I surprised myself by buying lots of veggies and some veggie based dips (guacamole and hummus) in order to make sure all of our dinners included veggies.

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Tuesday night I still felt bloated and knew I needed to start incorporating exercise to encourage movement if you know what I mean ๐Ÿ˜‰ Plus I wanted those endorphins! So again I turned to the internet. It was another late night but boy am I happy I started surfing. I found the post below and it fired me up.

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ryschyragzfitness In honor of todayโ€™s workout I had to wear this shirt ๐Ÿ˜†. I had to do what I Needed to do and not what I Wanted to do. I had to keep going when I wanted to ๐Ÿ›‘ more than a few times. Whew ๐Ÿ’จ๐Ÿ’จ๐Ÿ’จ. I could have made excuses for why it was ok for me to stop. But I didnโ€™t, I found my Beast Mode and #sheaintcute and kept going. So Today letโ€™s do what we need to do and not what we want to do. Plain and simple. Your needs are the most important, not your wants. Cater to your Needs… 1. You need to eat healthy, but you want to have a donut ๐Ÿฉ 2. You need to move and be active, but you want to lie down instead. 3. You need to be positive, but you want to feed yourself negative talk. Get where Iโ€™m going? Master taking care of Your Needs and everything else will fit into place. I guarantee it. #aintnoexcuse #selflove #marathon #thankmelater #thankyourselfnow #fitnesslifestyle #Fitmom#needsversuswants #doit #dontquit#beautyandabeast
NOTE: I asked the woman above for permission to post this screenshot and whenever possible I contact people BEFORE posting. If I do not get permission for a post or don’t receive a reply I will only reference what I saw or post the person’s handle so it can be looked up. The exception would be quotes from Pinterest but I NEVER remove any logo/ trademarks/ watermarks because I believe the originator deserves the credit for their creative work.

I found her post so motivating that I checked out her website (www.ryschyragz.com) and planned a workout for the morning. Wednesday I not only smashed a pilates workout but I cooked dinner for the rest of the week! I wanted to keep the momentum going so I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. I was hit with something to the effect of you didn’t fail if you only did 7 days of a 10 day cleanse; You succeeded for 7 days!! This hit me hard because negative talk is how I would fall off. I now look at each day as a day I succeeded. On days I’m not perfect I look at each accomplishment individually: meals, workouts, personal time, etc.

I was going to include all the individuals that inspired me but this post is long enough. Rather than give up on shining a light on those who’ve motivated me I am going to blog about them and I will include specifics if I can get permission to do so.

If you’ve gotten this far because you need motivation, I hope this helps and I hope you come back in the future when I post more of what motivates me. If you made it this far simply to read what I had to say then THANK YOU ๐Ÿ™‚